What constitutes great customer experience is going to differ from customer to customer, it is going to be different for each type of engagement between a provider and a customer, and therefore it is imperative that the provider understands the needs of the customer at the beginning of the engagement. What does success look like for that particular engagement?
I recently made a call to a support center to report a degraded service issue and subsequently received a survey request where I rated the overall experience as low. The issue I reported was resolved, the agents were friendly and knowledgeable and yet I was disappointed with the experience. Why, well here were three key areas that I focused in on during my survey response.
First, when I made the call the initial agent was unable to assist me and cold transferred me to another analyst to take care of my issue. Once the second agent picked up I had to provide my account details, verify my identity and provide an overview of my issue for a second time after I had already been through that with the first agent who was unable to help me..
Second, while troubleshooting the issue the agent on the phone needed to consult with another support group and I was placed on hold several times over the course of the call.
Lastly, once the issue was diagnosed the support team needed to restart my services to get them working again. Most of the time this sort of resolution effort would not be an issue except that I wasn’t notified prior to the service disruption and given an opportunity to schedule the action for a time that was more suitable to meet my needs..
The failed experience resulted from a lack of understanding of my issue and my needs. If the initial agent had asked me I would have provided the following details:
- My issue is low impact, as my service was still functioning, and medium priority. I was calling simply to notify them of the degraded service.
- I was currently working at the time of the call but would be available throughout the day to work with support teams to resolve the issue if required.
- I was currently using the service and interruptions would negatively impact my ability to complete my work.
By understanding my needs, the support teams could have worked on my issue while I was using my service. Communications between me and the support teams could have been completed through follow up calls or emails instead of me sitting on hold through the support process. Most importantly, resolution of the issue could have taken place at a time when my service was not being used.
So, I challenge you all to think about what excellent customer service and customer experience would look like for you and ensure when you are working with you clients and customers you understand what it looks like for them.